10 Essential Driving Tips to Always Keep in Mind
By Space Coast Daily // April 9, 2021
Do you find it stressful to drive? Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned driver, driving can be stressful. With around 6 million car accidents in the US each year, it’s easy to see why.
A situation can turn from calm to dangerous in seconds and if you’re not used to it, it can be hard to handle.
Read on for these 10 essential driving tips to always keep in mind, to keep you safe on the roads.
Find the Right Seat Position
A lot of people overlook it, but this is a crucial point. When learning how to drive, or new to driving, you might not realize you can adjust your seat. You might have been driving for a while and not realized it either.
You can adjust your seat to have the right reach, and angle for your body. You need to be in a comfortable position, where you can reach the controls. You don’t want your thighs or back to ache or strain.
Get Your Focal Point Right
Your brain needs time to process the information it receives. If you only look at a single car ahead of you, you don’t give yourself much reaction time. Look as far ahead as you can, to give yourself as much reaction time as possible.
In busy traffic, or on a highway, you need to look past the first few cars. Check between the lanes and trust your peripheral vision, it will let you know if the car ahead slams the breaks.
Check Blind Spots
Sitting in your seat, you can have a clear front view, and when using your mirrors, you can see most of what’s behind. But you won’t be able to see everything, and it’s common to neglect your blind spots.
Blind spots are the areas your mirrors don’t cover because the car structure blocks them. For example, the front windscreen pillars. To compensate for this, you’ll need to look over your right shoulder each time you want to move to the left of the road.
It’s important that you keep a safe distance from the car in front of you at all times. As driving advice, you should keep at least two cars distance between you and the vehicle in front.
If the car in front has to swerve or emergency brake, this gives you enough time to react and avoid a crash. This is a good habit to get into as soon as possible, to keep you and other road users safe.
Use Your Horn and Indicators
Your horn and indicators are the only way you can communicate with other drivers. When required, make sure you’re using them both as they’re designed for this purpose.
You should use your horn to let other drivers know you’re there, not as an outlet for frustration. Each time you turn or move lanes, you should always use your indicators. This lets the driver behind you know your intentions, and they can maintain distance.
Keep a Lookout for Weather Changes
The weather is unpredictable, it can change in an instant so you always need to keep your eye on it. Driving on a clear day is very different from driving in the snow, wind, wet, cold, or heat.
Make sure your car can handle any weather conditions that are prone to your area. This car accident law firm explains ways to avoid an accident when driving in the rain. It’s well worth checking them out!
Get A Dashcam
Dashcams are still quite new, but they’re gaining popularity in the auto industry. They record everything you come across when driving. If you come across any mishaps or get into an accident, people will be quick to pass the blame.
At-fault drivers rarely admit it, but if you have the footage to prove it, it will strengthen any claim you need to make. There isn’t much they can do to shift the blame if the evidence is staring everyone in the face.
Don’t Drive When Emotional
While driving, you need to pay the absolute closest attention to what’s around you. Your mind needs soul focus on the road. If you drive in a bad mood, or when you’re upset it can cause a big distraction.
Whether a beginner or a pro, distractions can be deadly. They open you up to making mistakes you’d never make if your mind focused. On a side note, it’s also important that you never drive tired. Always make sure you’re well-rested before getting behind the wheel.
Be Defensive When Driving
Make sure you know what’s happening around you at all times. This should include what other vehicles are nearby, and what the drivers are doing.
The safest way to drive is to assume that someone is about to cause a crash. You need to always focus on where you’d go if one started to happen right in front of you.
Could you duck into the shoulder, is there a drop-off? How close is the car in the next lane? Is there room to swerve if you need to, or is there enough distance for you to emergency break? These are questions you need to think about.
Always Stay Alert and Prepared
A lot of things can go wrong when you’re on the road. You could get a flat tire, or a major accident could hit. You can’t tell when things are going to go wrong, but you can prepare in case they do.
Keep a spare set of warm clothes, a blanket, and an umbrella. Know where important documents like your drivers license are too. This way, if you break down and have to move away from your car to safety, you won’t be cold and wet for hours on end.
Driving Tips You Won’t Want to Forget
So, there you have it! Now you know these 10 driving tips, you’ll be sure to stay safer on the roads.
Make sure you always in a comfortable position and can reach what you need to. Like never driving when emotional, driving in discomfort can cause distractions too. Be focused, and always assume a crash could happen at any moment. If you’re prepared for anything, you’ll be better able to reach if the worst does happen.
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